Cushions, after Georges Braque, “The Studio” (Vase before a Window)


after Georges Braque, “The Studio” (Vase before a Window)


In the well-lit studio, a cushion

on a yellow stool

near potted plant with heart-shaped leaves

before the three-paned window.


A hand-stitched rounded cushion,

threads of emerald, mustard, pink

radiate like thick-veined leaves

from a central cushion stem

all perched atop a sturdy wooden stool

the painter isn’t sat on.


There’s a palette, quite guitarish,

strings (or brushes) much linguinish.

The textiles in the room are broad:

floral paper, chunky vase

the plant is potted down in.

Layers of papers, swath of pink,

rest upon an easel.  But no one’s bum

is resting on that cushion:

it seems the work’s preoccupation

and featured as self portrait.


Outside the window, weak blue sky

some puffy clouds and street-car wires.

The view is overwhelmed by wood

and golds, especially that cushion:

the one who thought the vase was “it”

(disinterested sitter) put on airs—

painters, writers, all great art

depends upon our cushions.


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